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A Distant Fire: Ibn al-Shahrazūrī’s Mystical Ode and Arabic Sufi Verse

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The al-Mawṣiliyya by al-Murṭaḍā Ibn al-Shahrazūrī (d. 511/1117) is among the earliest Arabic odes on Sufism. Ibn al-Shahrazūrī drew from the Arabic qaṣīda tradition, the Qur’an, and Sufism to compose his elegant poem on the quest for mystical illumination. This article offers a critical Arabic edition of the ode along with an English translation. This is followed by a close reading of the poem and the consideration of poetic and religious influences on Ibn al-Shahrazūrī, and the possible influence of his ode on later Sufi verse, including that by Ibn al-Fāriḍ, Ibn al-ʿArabī, ʿĀʾisha al-Bāʿūniyya, and al-Nābulusī.

Affiliations: 1: University of


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