When I first started this assignment, I assumed it would be relatively easy to investigate, discover, and provide resources and relevant materials. As I began to collate the information, nothing could be more than the truth. It was not spirituality or mysticism, Shir was the problem. Sihr was elusive.
As Sihr magic, a vastly complex esoteric discipline concept as it was undefinable and hard to characterize as it is. For what is there to characterize based on my proposal? A series of interconnected ideas based on one thousand-year-old practice of magic, that may or may not have existed?
The early postulations I managed to gather and eke out a few threads from the practices of the wide and centrality of the ideas that pertain to (mostly) mysticism, in the inner realms of a religiously Islamic context.
Under the vaster the tree many branches school, I managed to discover some descriptions of the magic, as well as describe and convey the ideas of medieval times and consecrated Arabic terms, some universal ideals, an assortment of concepts and truths that belong to a domain that is entirely canonically ‘non-western, and alien. And not centrality to the worldly experience of western nations. Too much of our information is derived from the MSM’s broadcast of all Muslims as terrorists. However, thankful to all perceptions of Islam is indeed changing.
From entering classical rapturous music of the utterance of the divine “Qawwali” or the heretical practices of mystical Sufism, the existence of actual holy artefacts, objects and beasts, and of course the idea of Alchemy, I think I have managed to intonate some results into an openly contextuality of reality that once was (and perhaps pieces of a world lost which still are!) which belongs to the religious and spiritual experience.
Secondly, there was a vaster variety of existing source material (available both on the greater JTOR archives) and other materials, much of which are contradictory) and much which describe in ethereality a history that paints a different world. It was a challenge to attune and portrait the picture and present within it, a set of posts.
In all assuaged honesty I’m not perfectly happy, as my original design was to cover many topics, and as time around as well-being a perfectionist (nothing in writing or ever “finished” for a writer, at least it’s worked on until it’s polished and acceptable) and dearly wished I had more time to do more than 6 posts. Yet I think what I have provided will suffice for the assignment.
Since most posts are prolonged (yet extensive), I believe I have succored to create enough content. I am somewhat satisfied with my coverage of all aspects of not only the knee-jerk gratification of Islamic “Magic”, as it lies in, but a larger outset of practices and rounding all over different parts of the Islamic spirituality.
But here it returns to the enigma of Sihr. To entail, ideate, and codify Sihr’s history is vaunted, in antiquities, obscured, and entirely anachronistically complex. Yet I feel I have made a forward step to at least unveil the precursory veil that belongs to the esoterism that still exists in open practice within pockets across the world (Dervishes, Qawwali, Sufism) and provided enough material to quench the thirst of many piqued interests, not only mine but the audience of the class who might find some cultural concepts relevant to a society that is forever commercial, innately materialistic, nostalgic about the deliverance of mainstream products, the inordinately sign an order of a lifeless and meaningless capitalistic society.
Much like the exquisitely fascinating and utterly meaningful nature of the Maori Whakataukī, these Arabic terms bring culture, value, and meaning to life.
And as Islam, as Islam is, pejoratively going through an exegesis of finding footing (as it has since the crusades’ till the 9/11 attacks) is indubitably tied with a diaspora around the world due to the conflict within the Middle East, I hope people are seeking more meaning in life than the given in the order of the ‘given’ in the universal status quo.
Further, as a novice to the vast knowledge presented in the doctrines of Islam, I found the Arabic and the ideas to be somewhat surprising, but as a lifelong search for within Islam, my interest had been piqued before but never been so satiated as I have found and sought. As I had researched this paper, deeper and deeper into some aspects of the faith. Also, the iconic idea that there had existed, or exists, magical objects or mystical creatures is existing, exhilarating, fascinating, and definitely worth research and study.
For the alchemy and the Sufism, I have strived to provide an interesting backdrop of ideas and Arabic words and terms that are essentially exotic (which from a secular and perspective of incisive homogeneous western insularity is also of referential interest) yet transcendental.
To build the e-portfolio, with images, writing, and videos, was challenging. I had to test my comparative understanding of how to compose the given essay-like structure (as I’m terrible with essays0 and place it in APA 7 style). Also, I realized the topic I chose was more onerous and complex, as I first initially would be, there was too much to cover!
Furthermore, Sihr is as anything proverbially tangible as such to as described exemplified in the real would be provocative, fountain of wonderment.
However, to consider mysticism, and Islam as Spirituality? They in recent times are experientable and a real vehemence of the existence, as provable as the postulated existence of an all-pervading creator…which the vaster portion of humanity believes in, within some form, yet denied reality in central existence by the prevailing truth in society and nations of our times.
And lastly, Yet the idea, the ritualism, and its forms, as said before, belongs to a mythological and fairy tale world, almost within a form of chimerical in total address. In addition, this admonishment, much of the time in contemporary, is something that does not belong or could be recorded into scientific processes that would translate to quantifiable through the scientific method.
Which in itself, like the appearance of life-changing theophanies (which have been told to occur in biblical times within Christianity, Judaism, Islam, and of course ancient times in India) is another source of inherent magical and mysteriousness that predates the modern and postmodern world. How do their realities fade while the world of the material continues? It will forever be a mystery to me.
This assignment has led to envisage perceive the world in a different manner and behold daily motions with more curiosity about all that exists on Dunya (Arabic: ‘to bring near’ and in a more common vernacular – – the physical manifestation of the earth) and an in all Jannah (heaven).