Stories from Biblography

Salah ad-Deen al-Ayubi (Part-88)

To read the previous part of this story,click here.The Ismailis are one of the branches of the Shiites and are named after Isma'eel ibn Ja'far as-Sadiq, but they are also known by names other than Ismailis, such as al-Batiniyah. They were given this name because...

Salah ad-Deen al-Ayubi (Part-87)

To read the previous part of this story,click here. The Muslims lost their fear of the Crusaders. A number of historians regard the failure of the Second Crusade as a turning point in the history of the Muslim-Christian conflict. In Syria it led to a decline...

Salah ad-Deen al-Ayubi (Part-86)

To read the previous part of this story,click here.The Crusader presence, using its local resources, was unable to change the situation in 539 AH/1144 CE, and even its reliance on help from the motherland was not sufficient. That is largely due to mistakes made by...

Salah ad-Deen al-Ayubi (Part-85)

To read the previous part of this story,click here.Scholars from the Maghreb take part in defending DamascusActual participation in the fighting was not limited to the Syrian scholars alone; some reports indicate that Maghrebi and Andalusian scholars living in Syria also took part in those...

Salah ad-Deen al-Ayubi (Part-84)

To read the previous part of this story,click here.The Victory of Damascus in the Second CrusadeIn Rabee' I 543 AH, the Franks besieged Damascus with ten thousand knights and sixty thousand foot soldiers. The Muslims of Damascus came out to confront them with one hundred...

Salah ad-Deen al-Ayubi (Part-83)

To read the previous part of this story,click here.How the Christian clergy viewed the Second CrusadeAs soon as news of the fall of Edessa at the hand of Imad ad-Deen Zangi in 539 AH/1144 CE had been confirmed, it reverberated in the capitals of Western...

Salah ad-Deen al-Ayubi (Part-82)

To read the previous part of this story,click here.The Crusader attack on DamascusThe allied Frankish armies headed towards Damascus, which was governed at that time by Mu'een ad-Deen Unur, the atabeg of king Mujeer ad-Deen Abiq ibn Muhammad ibn Buri. Mujeer ad-Deen was the closest...

Salah ad-Deen al-Ayubi (Part-81)

To read the previous part of this story,click here.The Seljuks destroy the German armyThe German army set out a few days ahead of the French army. When it reached the area of Dorylaeum, east of Nicaea -” the same site where the Franks of the...

Salah ad-Deen al-Ayubi (Part-80)

To read the previous part of this story,click here.'Imad ad-deen's political and military role in Islamic historyIt may be said that Imad ad-Deen Zangi was able to fulfil a large part of his plan and carve out for himself a special position in Islamic history...

Khair al-Nassaj (Part-2)

To read the previous part of this story, click here."It would not be right," he would say, "for a brother Muslim to give me a name and for me to change it."From time to time he practised weaving. Sometimes he used to go down to...

Khair al-Nassaj (Part-1)

Abu '1-Hasan Mohammad ibn Esma'il (Khair ibn 'Abd Allah) al-Nassaj of Samarra, a pupil of Sari al-Saqati and a member of al-Jonaid's circle, was taken as a slave in Basra but afterwards proceeded to Mecca. He is said to have lived to the age of...

aI-Termedhi (Part-4)

To read the previous part of this story, click here."The child of Iblis," Eve answered. "He left him in my charge.""Why did you consent?" Adam reproved her. In a fury he slew the child and cut him into pieces, and hung each piece from the...

aI-Termedhi (Part-3)

To read the previous part of this story, click here."Sirrah, you put yourself up against a man who eighty times brought succour to a dog," the Prophet said. "If you desire eternal happiness, go, bind up your loins and serve him." The ascetic, too ashamed...

aI-Termedhi (Part-2)

To read the previous part of this story, click here."However hard I strove to keep my carnal soul in subjection," Termedhi related, "I could not prevail over it. In my despair I said, 'Haply Almighty God has created this soul for Hell. Why nurture a...

aI-Termedhi (Part-1)

One of the outstanding creative thinkers of Islamic mysticism, Abu 'Abd Allah Mohammad ibn 'Ali ibn al-Hosain al-Hakim al-Termedhi was driven out of his native town of Termedh and took refuge in Nishapur, where he was preaching in 285 (898). His psychological writings influenced al-Ghazali,...

Somnun (Part-2)

To read the previous part of this story, click here.Somnun and Gholam KhalilGholam Khalil had made himself known to the caliph as a Sufi, bartering away his eternal salvation for worldly advantage. He always maligned the Sufis before the caliph, his intention being to secure...

Somnun (Part-1)

Abu '1-Hasan Somnun ibn 'Abd Allah (Hamza) al-Khauwas, a companion of Sari al-Saqati, was called "the Lover" because of his discourses and poems on the theme of mystical love. Denounced by Gholam al-Khalil, he died c.300 (913). The story of Somnun the LoverSomnun commonly called...

Ibn Ata (Part-2)

To read the previous part of this story, click here."Old man," he cried, "if you had said this before, none of your sons would have been killed." "How is it with you Sufis," certain theologians asked Ibn Ata, "that you have invented terms which sound...

Ibn Ata (Part-1)

Abu 'l-'Abbas Ahmad ibn Mohammad ibn Sahl ibn 'Ata' al-Adami was a close companion of alJonaid. Author of mystical verses and a prominent member of the Baghdad circle, he was put to death in 309 (922).Anecdotes of Ibn AtaIbn Ata was one of the leading...

Salah ad-Deen al-Ayubi (Part-79)

To read the previous part of this story,click here.The following year, the regent of Antioch went out and raided the valley of Baza'ah, near Aleppo, and was confronted by Suwar, ...