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


(Kathif). In the pairings which relate to the existent things in the cosmos, kathif stands opposite latif (subtle). During the process of descent things increase in density. The further away they are from the Source Itself, the greater their density. Objects in the material world have reached the point of maximum density. Yet, through direct spiritual experience, through unveiling, the observer becomes aware that those things which were once perceived as thick, are in reality, very subtle (latif) indeed. He perceives this most profoundly in his own physical body. while in ecstasy (wajd) or under the powerful influence of a spiritual state (hal) his body seems to disintegrate and merge into the surrounding atmosphere. His body becomes like the primordial dust.

See also: Dust Pair State Subtle
(Al Haba). 'The fine dust suspended in the air'. Al haba is a symbol of the universal plastic substance or the prima materia. This symbolism illustrates the double nature of the Spirit. Dust becomes visible only when a beam of light is refracted off it and the beam of light becomes visible only when it is refracted off the veil of dust. The created Spirit is like that beam of light, needing the universal plastic substance which is the cosmos.
(Zawj). On the Spiritual Journey of Return to Allah there are certain moral and spiritual attributes which are paired. It is necessary for these pairs to be experienced and assimilated by the traveller (salik). Such pairs are hope and fear, expansion and contraction, intoxication and sobriety, annihilation and subsistence. Perfection is passing beyond the opposing pairs to that point where 'opposites are joined'.
(Latif). Subtle or delicate or fine, as opposed to dense and thick. For the knower who 'sees things as they are', the dense and solid objects are seen to be very subtle (latif). This knowledge is one of the important unveilings of the Path. Also an indication to any idication of delicate meaning that gives a hint to the understanding that is not contained by the literal expression.

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