Ibn Arabi: Love

Ibn al-‘Arabi has dedicated a complete chapter of his Futuhat al-Makkiya to love, which has been translated by Maurice Gloton as ‘Traité de L’Amour’ (ISBN 2-226-02715-7).

He describes 3 types of love (pp. 67-127):

1. Divine love
2. Spiritual love
3. Natural love.

For those not knowing Arabic or French Stephen Hirtenstein has described these 3 types of love in his ‘The Unlimited Mercifier’ (ISBN 1-883991-29-3). See pp. 191-203. A condensed description with all the major features of the exposition of the shaykh is given on pp. 194-195:

“Know that Love is according to three degrees. (Firstly) there is natural love, which is the love of ordinary people, whose aim is unification in the animal spirit… It ends in the act of physical union, in which the passion of love spreads through the whole body like water permeating wool, or rather, like the permeation of colour in the coloured.
(Secondly) there is spiritual love of the soul, whose aim is becoming like the Beloved, accomplishing what is the Beloved’s due and knowing His decree.
(Thirdly) there is Divine Love, which is the love of God for the servant and the love of the servant for God, as in His word: “He loves them and they love Him”. Its greatest degree occurs in two ways:

(According to the first way) the servant sees that he is a place of manifestation for God, while it is God Who is the Manifest. This is like the spirit is for the body, its interior, in which it is always invisible and never seen. So he only sees Him as a lover.

(On the other hand) God may become a place of manifestation for the servant, so that He is qualified by whatever qualities the servant is qualified by, in terms of limitation, scope and non-essential characteristics, and the servant sees this. Then he becomes the beloved of God.

As things are as we have said, there is no limit to love, by which it could really be known. It can be limited in speaking or writing, though not otherwise”.

3 Comments Add yours

  1. KgnReshma says:

    KGN,
    Love transforms the personality of a Seeker & Seeker leaves no stone unturned in unifying with his/her Beloved (in terms of Spiritual connection-Nisbat) be it in the heavens, the earth or the internet cloud.

    Here’s what the Nobel Prize winner Shri Rabindranath Tagore has to say about ’Love’…….

    ‘Trust love even if it brings sorrow,
    Do not close up your heart.’
    Ah no, my friend, your words are dark,
    I cannot understand them.

    ‘The heart is only for giving away,
    With a tear & a song, my love.’
    Ah no, my friend, your words are dark,
    I cannot understand them.

    ‘Pleasure is frail like a dewdrop,
    While it laughs it dies.
    But sorrow is strong & abiding,
    Let sorrowful love wake in your eyes.’
    Ah no, my friend, your words are dark,
    I cannot understand them.

    ‘The lotus blooms in the sight of sun,
    And loses all that it has.
    It would not remain in bud,
    In the eternal winter mist.’
    Ah no, my friend, your words are dark,
    I cannot understand them.

    Wine pours from the Goblet ‘ In Tune With Tagore’ edited by Suresh Dalal & Kallolini Hazarat.

    Thanking the Cupbearer & the Lord of two worlds for the inspiration provided to sing in this mystical Tavern!

  2. KgnReshma says:

    Bismillah KGN,
    A Hundred Salaams to the Prophet (PBUH) of Islam,
    To Khwaja Moin’ with adab I pay Salaam.
    Before Haji Abdur Reheman Shah Baba I humbly prostrate,
    With His blessings year after year we sumptuously ate.

    Next Salaams to my Murshid’s Chisti Pir,
    Each time at Chilla I pray round Him in Cir.
    My humble Salaams to my Spiritual guide,
    In Him the Good & Bad things I Confide.
    May His dear Ones to always blessed,
    In God’s clothes their appearance is dressed.

    Today let’s see what Love to us says,
    Lost in Beloved in the Sky I blankly gaze.
    Ghous Ul Azam Piran-e-Peer,
    Says Syed Mohiuddin Roshan Zameer.
    ‘Love being a sweet pain,
    An irritant feeling lover’s gain.
    Separated from beloved? Fly with pain in thy wing,
    World a condolence meet, a circle of ring.
    State of restlessness knows no rest,
    Love an intoxication, a permanent guest.

    Lover closes his/her eyes from all,
    Image of Beloved displayed in eye ball.
    Mindfulness is truly lost,
    Till Vision of beloved before eye is tossed.
    Invalid lovers hardly recover,
    Until Pearl displays His golden cover.
    Lover has no regard for others,
    Averse & unmindful to all, dyed in Beloved’s Colors.’

    Solution derived from the equation of Love ‘Ghous-Ul-Azam Piran-E-Pir’ by Hazrat Dr. Zahurul Hassan Sharib Gudri Shah Baba IV.

  3. KgnReshma says:

    Bismillah KGN-Salaams,
    Seeker knows not the types of love,
    Beloved is pure & innocent as a dove.

    Yeh He taught us to love one & all,
    Behind Him wish to walk & crawl.

    Valentine’s Day brings love & joy,
    Sacrifice & sharing make this alloy.

    It’s not always about U & me,
    Rab knows why Lovers love Thee.

    Love called me loud & clear,
    “Forget self, spread some cheer.

    Search not for Khwaja in His shrine,
    Complete thy task, He pours U wine.

    Incase thee love thy Shaykh,
    To lust & desires put a brake.

    Work not only for self, do some good,
    In fire of love, burn likewise the wood.

    Beating of impure heart is no fun,
    Sufis like selfless services, Off U run.

    What’s good, what’s bad why ponder?
    All that happens is Allah’s affair.

    In His presence thee remained absent,
    Now in absence search His presence.

    Pain & Separation is thy destiny,
    Seekers get burnt in such anxiety.

    Tears dried up, surely time is lost,
    Sufism has cost thee quite a lot?

    Not a remedy for such a malady,
    Burn & perish O, U insane lady.

    Upon U a wise Shaykh KGN bestowed,
    On His feet love & respect be showed.

    Alas now thee can’t leave His robe?
    U the laughing stock, on this globe.

    Spread the Love all around,
    Sufis love all, wise or clown.

    Wait a while for His anger to subside,
    Trust in Him, talk less; says thy guide.

    Now Off I go, U worry no more,
    Patiently wait love is held, at His door. ”

    Thank You.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.