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

Sayyidi Ahmad Arabi ash-Sharnubi
Sayyidi Ahmad Arabi ash-Sharnubi (d. 994AH/1586CE)

Sayyidi Ahmad Arabi ash-Sharnubi was born in Sharnub in the Nile Delta near Dasuq. His linage traces back to Sayyiduna wa Mawlana al Imam al Hussayn. Sayyidi Ahmad Arabi ash-Sharnubi travelled widely, staying in Damanhur, living in Mecca and Medina for seven years, founded a Zawiyya in Cairo, and sojourned in Istanbul. He was also a scholar at al-Azhar University. The doctrine of the four major poles (aqtab) can be traced to Sayyidi Ahmad Arabi ash-Sharnubi, where he wrote that there are four grand poles within Sufism to whom all subsequent taruq are attached. He was the heir of the four poles and the Muhammadan light that shines in them. Sayyidi Ahmad is the founder of the Sharnubiyya tariqa. He died in Anatolia in 994AH/1586CE where he is buried.


See also: Spiritual Chain Sayyiduna wa Mawlana al Imam al Hussayn (4AH/626CE or 61AH/680CE) Poles Light of Muhammad
(Silsilat). The Spiritual Chain of each tariqa descends from the Holy Prophet Muhammad himself (May the Salutations of Allah be upon him and Peace) down to the present-day Shaykh. It is through his attachment to the silsilat that the newly initiated murid has the means to travel to Allah under Divine Protection.
Sayyiduna wa Mawlana al Imam al Hussayn was born in Medina in 4AH/626CE. He was grandson of the Prophet (May the Salutations of Allah be upon him and Peace), son of Sayyiduna wa Mawlana-l Imam Ali and Sayyidatuna as-Sayyida Fatima Zahra. Next to the main door of his mosque in Cairo is a plaque which reminds all who enter that the Prophet (May the Salutations of Allah be upon him and Peace) said "I am from Hussayn, and Hussayn is from me." Despite expectations of him to take a prominent political role, Imam al Hussayn shunned the grandeur of his genealogical status in favour of breaking bread with the poor and needy. While he suffered persecution at the hands of the political powers, Imam al Hussayn said "I will never give my hand like a man who has been humiliated, nor will I flee like a slave ... I have not risen to spread evil or to show off ... I only desire to enjoin good values and prevent evil." After three days of being denied water in the scorching desert heat, his oppressors attacked. Vastly outnumbered, Imam al Hussayn and his companions resisted the oppressors despite being fatigued, thirsty, and heavily wounded. Imam al Hussayn was the last to be slain and, while he was killed mercilessly, he dies holding firmly to his principles, that of instating an Islamic polity rather than unjust rulers.
(Al Aqtab). These are the exalted friends of Allah around whom various realities of the universe turn. Every Pole (Qutb) is named by two names; firstly, through his essential perfection in manifesting the Name 'Allah', he is the 'Slave of Allah' ('Abdullah); and secondly, through his accidental perfection of being in a particular place during a particular era to fulfil a particular function, he is the slave of one specific Divine Name, e.g. 'slave of the Generous' ('Abd al Karim) or 'slave of the Merciful' ('Abd al Rahman). Even though the poles come together under the All-Comprehensive Name 'Allah', they are nonetheless ranked in degrees of excellence according to the Divine Name which has taken charge of them.
(Nur Muhammadiyya). "Allah took a handful of His Light and said 'Be! Muhammad'". From this pre-existent Light of Muhammad (nur Muhammadiyya) all of the spheres were created. It is the Light of Muhammad that enables the traveller to advance towards the Reality of Muhammad (al haqiqa al Muhammadiyyah). Without the cooling nature of this light the salik would not advance, or if he did advance he would be burned-up. The differentiation between the Light of Muhammad (nur Muhammadiyya) and the Reality of Muhammad (al haqiqat al Muhammadiyyah) is within the degrees of the descent of Being, from the Inward Non-manifestation of the Hidden Treasure to the outward manifestation of the cosmos.

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