A Critical Edition of Qawaid al-Tasawwuf by Ahmad Zarruq (d. 899/1493) with Introduction
Ur Rehman, Ghulam Shamas
Thesis or dissertation
University of Exeter
The present study is an attempt to restore the text of Qawaid al-Tasawwuf by comparative and comprehensive study of its manuscripts. This thesis also aims to study Zarruq’s concept of juridical Sufism as manifested in this book. Qawaid is one of the most significant works of Zarruq in which he tried to introduce the principles of Sufism in a way that integrates shariah with haqiqah and incorporates theology and jurisprudence with the tariqah; or a fusion of legal rectitude within Sufi devotion and piety. Interpreting the Shadhili notion of usuli tasawwuf, Zarruq constructed the theory of juridical Sufism on its theological and metaphysical grounds. The presentation of Islam in such an integrated form appealed and attracted not only the Muslim scholars but also saints to his most impressive accomplishment. His teachings and intellectual legacy left a lasting impact on Maghribi society, in particular the circles of the Shadhiliyah which were renamed the Zarruqiyah due to his impact. This thesis is divided into two parts. The first part consists of the edited text of Qawaid al-Tasawwuf since the main concern of this thesis is to restore the original text and verify the authenticity of its contents by the comparative study of its MSS. In order to establish a clear, authentic and authoritative text, the rules of codicology, orthography and methods of textual research have been applied. Six MSS and a published edition have been used for the restoration of the text. After establishing the text, some appendices have been added to make the text more accessible for readers. These appendices contain some additional Qawaid, references to Quranic verses, Prophetic traditions, and sources mentioned in the text. Moreover a bibliography and index is fixed at the end. The second part contains an introduction which has been divided into six unequal sections. The first section is a short introduction to Zarruq’s life, his teachers, his travels from Morocco to the Hijaz as well as his migration to Misratah and other important events of his life. The second section is an attempt to present Zarruq’s intellectual heritage by outlining his works and the contribution of his Sufi order. The third section is an introduction to the manuscripts and published editions of Qawaid al-Tasawwuf. The fourth section explains the methodology of editing used for the restoration of the text. The fifth section is a description and analysis of Qawaid al-Tasawwuf. The most significant task of this section is to analyze Zarruq’s ideas as manifested in this book in order to appreciate how he amalgamates and integrates Islamic jurisprudence with Sufism. We consider this his most significant contribution to the Sufi heritage because of its distinctive genre, theme and its innovative ideas concerning the unification of the Sufi path with law and theology and its elaboration and explanation though the qawaid genre, upon the model of works of al-qawaid al-fiqhiyah wa-al-usuliyah (jurisprudential and theological maxims). The sixth section is a summary of Qawaid al-Tasawwuf. According to the Escorial MS the Qawaid consists of a preface, an epilogue and two hundred and twenty four principles. These principles are divided into seventeen chapters which consist of unequal and loosely related qawaid. In this section we have attempted to present a brief summary of each qaidah.
PhD in Arab and Islamic Studies