The Principles of Sufism

by ‘A’ishah al-Ba‘uniyyah, translated by Th. Emil Homerin

Category: Non-Fiction, Religion & Philosophy

The Principles of Sufism is a mystical guide book to help others on their spiritual path. Outlining the four principles of Repentance, Sincerity, Remembrance, and Love, it traces the fundamental stages and states of the spiritual novice’s transformative journey, emphasizing the importance of embracing both human limitations and God’s limitless love. Drawing on lessons and readings from centuries-old Sufi tradition, ‘A’ishah advises the seeker to repent of selfishness and turn to a sincere life of love. In addition to his lucid translation, Th. Emil Homerin provides an insightful introduction, notes and a glossary to ‘A’ishah al-Ba‘uniyyah’s remarkable account of the pursuit of mystical illumination.

‘A’ishah al-Ba‘uniyyah of Damascus was one of the great women scholars in Islamic history. Born into a prominent family of pious scholars and Sufi devotees, ‘A’ishah received a thorough religious education and memorized the Quran at age eight. A mystic and a prolific poet and writer, she composed more works in Arabic than any other woman before the twentieth century.

Yet despite her extraordinary literary and religious achievements, ‘A’ishah al- Ba‘uniyyah remains largely unknown. For the first time, her key work, The Principles of Sufism, is available in English translation.

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About the Author

‘A’ISHAH AL-BA‘UNIYYAH (d. 923 H/1517 AD) of Damascus was one of the great women scholars in Islamic history. A mystic and prolific poet and writer, ‘A’ishah composed more works in Arabic than any other woman before the twentieth century.

TH. EMIL HOMERIN is Professor of Religion in the Department of Religion & Classics at the University of Rochester, where he teaches courses on Islam and classic Arabic literature. His earlier publications include Emanations of Grace: The Mystical Verse of ‘A’ishah al-Ba‘uniyyah.

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Praise for the Book

‘Masterful… Elegant and readable’—CHOICE

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