Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Jesus, the Murshid

Jesus was a messenger, a prophet, a saint and a friend of God. As he guided disciples and did so with the authority given to him by God he as also a murshid.

Both westerners as well as easterners can approach the Divine Knowledge (Gnosis) by means of Jesus. Some Sufis (Muslim Mystics) are called Isawi. Isa is the Arabic (and Aramaic) name of Jesus, so Isawi means that those Sufis with a spiritual connection with Jesus. Others are e.g. Musawi, implying a link with Moses, etc.. In the days after Muhammad (upon him be peace) all these connections go by means of him.

Shaykh Ibn al-'Arabi claims that his conversion (tawba) took place between the hand of Jesus, his first master. He said about Jesus: "He has prayed for me in order that I might persist in the religion... and has called me his beloved. He ordered me to practise zuhd (renunciation) and tajrid (the stripping away of all that is unnecessary)".

So Jesus was his first murshid, but of course he was not physically present to him. When he was accepted into Sufism by his first murshid whom he met in the flesh in Spain, this murshid was an Isawi Sufi.

And We made the son of Mary (Isa) and his mother as a Sign ... The Quran 023.050

And remember when Isa, the son of Mary, said: "O Children of Israel! I am the messenger of God sent to you, confirming the Law (which came) before me (the Torah), and giving Glad Tidings of a Messenger to come after me, whose name shall be Ahmad (the praised one)." The Quran 061.006

Note: Murhid is an Arabic/Sufi term which is used to call the teacher or spiritual guide or master. It is equivalent to Rabbi (meaning teacher, 'great one' in literal meaning) in Jewish tradition. Many of the disciple and companions of Jesus Christ used to call him Rabbi or Rabboni (the great master).

:: Relevant Post: Jesus, the Sufi Master
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