Reassurance for the Seeker
Author: Samer Dajani
Publisher: Fons Vitae
This is again such an extraordinary work. What I love is that it provides a glimpse into the august scholarly and spiritual traditions of Islam carried forth into our day. Some people may have concluded that the saints and sages of Islam ended with all those names with whom we are most familiar - Ghazali, Jilani, Rumi and so on. It is important to understand that the knowledge and spiritual dephth reached in past centuries and celebrated in so many books, in fact, has and does continue into the present day. Otherwise, it would not be eternal Truth.
This volume is a unique collection of forty Prophetic Traditions distinguished by their focus on the spiritual journey of drawing nearer to God, as explicated by Salih al-Jafari, one of the most celebrated teachers of al-Azhar, Islam's leading institution of religious knowledge (939 CE til now) and most authoritative voice. In an age in which people increasingly search for Truth, but are confused by opposing trends and controversies, the author's indisputable scholarship, wisdom, and spiritual insight help guide, inspire, and reassure the modern reader. This book includes a detailed biography of the shaykh, a translation of al-Jafari's commentary, al-Fawaid al-Jafariyya, as well as an illumiating treatise by Ahmad b. Idris, one of his foremost teachers, on a hadith that concisely summarizes the spiritual nature of the Prophet Muhammad. In clear and illuminating text, the book deals with matters relating to the nature of spiritual experience, nearness to and friendship with God, as well as death and the afterlife.
Shaykh Salih al-Jafari was one of the most famous scholars of the Azhar, the Muslim world's premier institution of religious learning and its most authoritative voice, in the 20th Century. He was also the imam of its mosque and a famous teacher and spiritual guide. He authored many works on Islamic jurisprudence and spirituality. He was born in 1910 in the Sudan; he arrived in Cairo at the age of twenty to study at al-Azhar, where he obtained the highest degree at the time - the Alimiyya. He then taught in al-Azhar Mosque and in 1953 earned a PhD from the faculty of Shari a. He became the imam of al-Azhar Mosque and was known for his Friday lessons, which were popular and well-attended. he wa the founder of the Sufi order, al-Jafariyya al-Ahmadiyya al-Muhammadiyya, which is active in education and social work and has followers around the world. Shaykh al-Jafari wrote approximately fifteen works on various Islamic sciences, edited many others, and compased twelve volumes of petry. He died in Cairo in 1979.
"Shaykh Salih al-Jafari is the Scale of the Scholars for they are to be measured according to him!"
-Alawi al-Maliki, prominent twentieth-century Meccan scholar