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On the common eternal principles,

and that Islam reigns.

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1a. postmodernism
1b. Schuon
1c. non-Islamic
1d RG - tradition
1e. a word of truth
2a ideology
2b. Islam: wider meaning
2c modern issues
3. anti-tradition
4a New Age
4b def. perennialism
5. def. tradition
5b. RG restored meaning
6. Islam reigns
6b. items of faith
6c acting how
7. validity of other religions
8. end

This abstract of seven+ chapters will discuss perennialism and if it is relevant for Islam. Traditional Islam as it is generally understood - and presented at * LivingIslam - IslamicTradition * - does not endorse perennialism, or perennialist interpretations. If it is claimed - as followers of perennialism do - that the world-religions or religious traditions are all equally valid roads to God - Allah, the Supreme Being, then this is not the case and contradicts all the teachings of Islam.

While keeping this in mind, it is wise to treat this issue delicately, because there are common principles of those world-religions or religious traditions, because these principles are eternal [4b]. As a matter of fact "sound Islamic doctrine affirms the oneness of heavenly religions although the dispensations and scriptures are more than one."[fn22]

Furthermore the diversity of religions must not lead to hatred and hostility. ”Prophet Muhammad ﷺ was not sent to destroy previous religions, but to reaffirm their essential content.”[30]

The term 'tradition' is explained in chapter [5.]. For the reason why it is Islam that reigns, see [6.], and about what Ibn ʿArabi wrote on those different religions and their legal systems - see [7], because for Islam and the Muslims it is nothing new to encounter other religious traditions apart from the Islamic tradition.

These questions will be clarified below.

And most importantly:
O Lord! - let us grow in knowledge (ʿilm) !

Today's dominant mentality is (modernism and) postmodernism which is being spread globally by the elites of West and ever more by those of the East - in the framework of globalization and modernization. This one-dimensional mentality, which has become a sort-of-ideology, does not only deny the validity of any spiritual tradition for the purpose of human life at its different levels, but also any absolute truth and eternal power as expressions of a Reality which is beyond sense perception [lk6]. And Islam witnesses that there is only one encompassing, transcendent power, God or Allah, beyond which there is no other!

René Guénon (Shaykh ʿAbd Al Wahid Yahya) analysed this fateful deviation of Western civilization already in the first half of the 20th century, for example when he wrote:

“Modern civilization appears in history as a real anomaly: Among all those we know, it is the only one which developed in a purely materialistic direction and the only one which does not rely on any principle of higher order.” [lk22]
arrow out lk6: Modernism And Postmodern Thought
arrow out lk22: Symbole der heiligen Wissenschaft

There have been many searchers for truth who were granted clarity of insight, some of them allowing for perennialist interpretations. As for one of René Guénon's (Shaykh ʿAbd Al Wahid Yahya's) early followers, F. Schuon, he was mostly interested in the only truth hidden in all forms. This is of course nothing else but the Ultimate Truth.

(There was also the question of the Holy Mary and her redeeming function for Christians. In this respect at least, it seems that F. Schuon, together with his group – deviated from traditional Islam in their neglect of the Shariʿah).

R Guénon (Shaykh ʿAbd Al Wahid Yahya) himself had no influence over those developments, and those who came after him, such as Shaykh Mustafa 'Abd al-'Aziz (Michel Valsan) took it on themselves to reconnect to an authentic spiritual path (Shadhili) - thus preserving the spiritual heritage of Shaykh ʿAbd Al Wahid Yahya and the Islamic tradition.[5]

Shaykh Ahmed Valsan (r - 2016), son of Michel Valsan, continued the work of his father regarding spiritual instruction and lectures on the Islamic tradition.[29]

arrow out lk25: Book review: Sufism: The Essentials, Mark J Sedgwick

Furthermore R Guénon's name has been abused in the most problematic and non-traditional contexts and even some anti-traditional circles have tried to instrumentalize RG for their sinister aims, so what is at stake here for the detached observer is to sift in a critical and responsible manner. [fn1] Certainly there is much intentional desinformation out there concerning RG., just as in the case of Islam itself.
arrow out fn1: M Sedgwicks homepage on RG is problematic

At a time when the sense of the sacred and its knowledge had been (almost completely) lost in the West - and today increasingly in the East - he set out to rediscover the sacred knowledge of Tradition, to describe it clearly and to defended it decisively without compromising with the truth.

On this website we have some of his texts on various issues.[lk13] We take what is beneficial and leave the rest. But to read René Guénon is mostly beneficial for those brought up in the modern West, it is not necessary for everyone.
arrow out lk29: On The Significance Of The Teachings Of RG For Every Seeker Of Truth, OKN

After having embraced Islam in Europe, René Guénon (Shaykh ʿAbd Al Wahid Yahya) lived his last 30 years as Muslim and well-respected Shaykh in Egypt. Many are those who found their way to Islam through his works and we recommend some of those books.[lk13] And knowledge is vast and the quest for it a life-long commitment.
arrow out 5a: the significance of Tradition
arrow out lk13: Some of his most important works

We have to follow the word of truth wherever it is found. Those persons - see [1b] - were people of good faith - with their own faults and shortcomings. However “many are more interested today in Guénon's individuality than in his intellectual works” (M A Tamas), whereas we don't think that it is (spiritually) beneficial “to know a lot of authors or even to pass judgement on them, but [what is beneficial is] to deeply study the traditional teachings and to apply them correctly.” (G Ponte) [fn16]

So we may take from the learned and the scholars what we find to be true and what corresponds to the teachings of Islam and we leave what does not, applying to the rule “take what you are sure of and leave what causes doubt.”

We follow what is good and correct from the Islamic tradition and leave the rest, and we certainly need a stringent, intellectual analysis of postmodernity, a system which effects us all more or less.

Or as a known shaykh explained: “The experience of teachers' fallibility does not detract from the benefits they hold in store for the seekers but serves to remind us that Allah Most High did not put ʿisma (freedom from error) in non-Prophets. So we take as much as we can of the numerous benefits and we forbear the lapses.”

When it comes to following someone entirely and striving as much as possible in his great effort, while reminding us that his noble mission is an expression of divine mercy (rahma) to the worlds, then this is of course the beloved and revered guide of men (and women), Muhammad, the Messenger of Allah ﷺ may Allah forever send His blessings and greetings upon him.
arrow out fn14: Prophet Muhammad ﷺ, guide and healer of humanity
arrow out lk4: From The Life Of Prophet Mohammed ﷺ

For a Muslim who wishes to preserve his dīn (religion) today, in this world of profanity and confusion and who is aware of the need to strengthen his religion (intellectually and by practice), and who wishes to invite others to the vision of Islam, it is important to understand the prevalent mentality of the Global West, its inconsistencies, and different ideologies which inform political decision-making. He needs to know where one-dimensional West lost its reason-of-being (raison d'être), when it (deviated and finally) gave up on its own spiritual tradition. [fn13] [lk23]

This may serve as a warning example for the people of religion, not the least the Muslims, who will see how the (post - ) modern mentality of the West emerged, how it casts into doubt any absolute, metaphysical truth and how it influences the public at large.

And the search-light will be directed at the sinister forces producing this meaningless mentality. We already know how the proponents of this postmodern 'ideology' look at religion (in general and at Islam specifically) and we shall show how they numb people's genuine yearning for God!
arrow out fn7: Christianity of the 11th century
arrow out fn10: Descartes, 'father of rationalism'
arrow out fn13: What Muslims Also Have To Do
arrow out lk8: Notes On The New Age Movement
arrow out lk17: Descartes limited intelligence to reason
arrow out lk23: Protestant Islam by Mohammed Al-Abbasi

Had Allah willed, He could have made the whole world – each and every one of its inhabitants – Muslim, but He - in His infinite knowledge - did not. { Mankind was one single nation, and Allah sent Messengers with glad tidings and warnings; ... } Sura 2, v. 213

One should therefore strive to also understand Islam in its wider – universal meaning, for the message of Islam aims at the same eternal kernel: to worship the One True God and to surrender to His Will with heart and soul. { It is Allah Who is my Lord and your Lord; then worship Him. This is a Way that is straight. } Sura 3, v. 51
Sheikh Ahmad Kuftaro said: “God gave the same revelation in quality and topic: thus, all prophets draw from one main spring or source; moreover, it is evident that the Quran orders the Muslims to believe in all God's prophets and to obey their commandments.”[lk21]
arrow out lk21: Islam and Christianity - Two Faiths, One God; Sh. A Kuftaro

And the People of the Book abide among us, Ibn al-Qayyim said:

الحكمة من إبقاء أهل الكتاب بين أظهرنا قالوا ولله تعالى حكم في إبقاء أهل الكتابين بين أظهرنا فإنهم مع كفرهم شاهدون بأصل النبوات والتوحيد واليوم الآخر والجنة والنار

"And God the Most High has ordained that the People of the Book abide among us. For verily, along with disbelief, they testify to the origin of prophecy, & monotheism, & (the reality of) the Day of Judgement, Paradise and the Fire.” (via @IsmailRoyer)

Then there is also the Amman Message - initiated by 24 senior scholars and endorsed by 200 of the world’s leading Islamic scholars (ulama) from 50 countries - which reminds us that “the origin of divine religions is one, and Muslims believe in all Messengers of God and do not differentiate between any of them. Denying the message of any of them is a deviation from Islam”.[lk23b]

So we don't deny those earlier messages and traditions, but we make it clear, that ”submission (as in the word islam) is always understood as submission to the latest prophet of the time, not to an earlier one, and so no submission remains today except that manifested in Islam.” GFH
arrow out lk23b: Amman Message - A Solution To Our Religious Tensions
arrow out fn17: "No distinction between any [of the prophets]" Sura 2, v. 136
arrow out fn2: The essential content of earlier religions

The classical imams of Islam, such as Abu Hanifa, Malik, al-Shafi'i, and Ibn Hanbal and those who came after them all deserve our respect and many of today's scholars do have the requisite knowledge to solve the problems of Muslims in the West (in postmodernity) and to respond to today's postmodern challenges. [fn18] Searching for new answers within the Shariʿah. [fn27]

The website * LivingIslam - IslamicTradition * is for two groups of people:
Muslims and those Non-Muslims who have a longing toward the worship of The Real, The One Supreme God (i.e. monotheism).

Regarding Non-Muslims, we need to warn against misguided syncretic sects, such as today's New Age-movements, which we examine, inshah Allah. In his days, this was done by R Guénon when he analysed thoroughly non-traditional 'spiritual' movements of old, [fn3] and disclosed their errors and deceit. They seduced (then and today even more) many of our fellow-beings – especially the young, who normally yearn for God – with a call of devastating consequences.

He restored or ’brought back’ the philosophical and metaphysical terms to their original, correct meanings.[fn3] By his untiring work, René Guénon (Shaykh 'Abd al-Wāhid Yahya) gave us the intellectual tools to see the real character and methods of those anti-traditional movements. He “disclosed as no-one else the mechanisms of counter-initiation and those psychic conditions which are a part of it” (M.S.). This way as muslims we will be able to respond to those satanic forces in the best way possible, without being confined to superficialities and namecalling.
arrow out fn3: RG analysed the Spiritists (forerunners of New Age)
arrow out lk8: Notes On The New Age Movement
arrow out lk11: Eleven False New Age Principles

Many traditional terms and concepts from the great religions are now-a-days misused by New Age-movements and other sects. They have already become seemingly respectable in large areas of societal discourse and are able to attract many clueless searchers for truth.

However they are concocting their evil soup mixing 'the Higher' with 'the lower', confusing spirituality with psychology [lk15] [lk15b] and eventually treating truth as falsehood and vice versa. Or they use eminent concepts such as 'the Self', 'the Soul' and even 'Sufism', etc. to mislead our fellow-beings.

But with those steadfast believers they will never succeed! -- Some weak-hearted muslims too, may be susceptible to their schemes, so read the hadith of the Prophet ﷺ who referred to the practices Jews and Christians:

"You shall follow the practices of those before you, inch by inch and mile by mile, to the degree that if they enter into the hole of a lizard, you will follow them." ...
(Agreed, Abu Sayeed)

arrow out fn6: De vill skapa nya religioner eller "icke-religioner".
arrow out lk11: Eleven False New Age Principles
arrow out lk15: Difference Between Spirit And Soul
arrow out lk12: see: Charles Upton; The System Of Antichrist

From the above follows, that the world-religions and religious traditions comprise common [fn12] metaphysical principles, which were then expressed in different ways;

Such as faith in God = the Absolute, the Highest Power or Ultimate Reality; as well as faith in a “greater life” in the Hereafter, in holy scriptures; and in a process where divine knowledge was (is being) revealed to mankind.
These items of faith were cleared and *updated* by the Islamic message, where doubtful metaphors such as 'reshaping the world' or 'children' or 'sons of God' were eliminated. Therefore only what is correct according to the message of Islam will be accepted,
as it was brought by Prophet Muhammad MHMD , and further developed by the Islamic schools of law, spirituality, sanctity, etc.

A definition of perennialism would be that it describes the (false) idea that all world-religions are valid ways to God. This has been rejected by the quranic verse { al-yaumu akmaltu lakum diinukum} [fn25], and it is up to Allah - in His infinite Mercy - to pass the final judgement.

So what is at stake here is to understand that while recognizing the Eternal Truth behind the different forms of religions [fn26], and striving to realize this truth, one must follow an authentic, living tradition, which is Islam - today and until the Day of Judgement.

Reality - The Real is One. Religions are many.
But these sacred traditions have similar principles (f. ex. to pray and to do good, to turn away from egotism, to refer to a divine scripture). These principles are there because the divine message is universal - God sent prophets to all nations. This is the dimension of truth.

But having similar principles does NOT imply that one regards
(a.) all religions as equally valid and
(b.) that it is of no importance which one to follow,
(c.) or worse to become disbeliever and not to follow any!

In addition similar universal principles are a proof against the atheists, nihilists and all the rest, who claim that the world religions are basically products of the human mind, i.e. rather clever - or not so - "inventions."

So there is a unity of principles - because these principles are eternal; and then there is the dimension of (the decadence of) time, the downward cycle in existence.[fn24]
This is the other dimension, in the process of which the old religions lost much/ all of their sanctifying and liberating power.

The example of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him - in the religion of Islam, his life, deeds and words of wisdom describes the authentic and operational way to gain knowledge of the Real, Allah (may His Majesty be exalted), a knowledge with bliss and felicity in this life and especially in the next. [6].

Prophet Muhammad ﷺ was ”not sent to destroy previous religions, but to reaffirm their essential content.”[30]

arrow out fn2: Islam - summit of the earlier messages
arrow out fn8: Instinctive knowledge of the Supreme Being in each human soul.
arrow out fn12: Islamic principles are clearer and based on an authentic sources.
arrow out lk3: World-religions have common core principles, bec. they are eternal.
arrow out [6c]
arrow out lk10: Why it matters which religion to follow!
arrow out 3a: anti-traditional designs

Concerning the term Tradition, it refers to the divine, eternal message [fn5] which has been sent or revealed since the time of Adam. Since man is forgetful (insān), it has been necessary to confirm and actualise the divine guidance over and over again. This was on - one level - the function of those different prophets who rose throughout the course of history (some of them came with new legal systems) and on another level of those special people of insight (basīra) and knowledge (ʿilm) of Allah. And those with most knowlege are those who are most sincere and upright in their personalities and most eager not to lose Allah's good pleasure. The Most Exalted says:

{ Verily the most honoured of you in the sight of Allah is (he who is) the most righteous [with most taqwā] of you. } Sura Al-Hujurat (49), v.13

In the specific case of the Islamic tradition, which was conveyed to mankind by the final Messenger of Allah ﷺ , it can be seen that this message is directed to all nations and peoples irrespective of age and culture. This is the reason for *Islam* reigning today and until the end of time [see chapters 6a] and [ 7 ].

To summarize:
What makes Islam ”traditional” or that Islam is an authentic ”Tradition” is not peoples' usages or customs, nor their culture or civilisation, but these two conditions:
(1) the fact that the truth of Islam was revealed from a non-human, Divine origin!
(2) the fact that this truth was formed in the way it was by the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ , i.e. by the message and pattern (sunna) and the whole religion of Islam, its schools of law, spirituality, sanctity.
— Therefore what is not meant here is what is usually called 'traditions', or usages and customs, or (Islamic) civilisation, but only the above.
arrow out see chapter [6a]
arrow out lk14: Tradition Islamique - Islamic Tradition
arrow out lk24: In the Spirit of Tradition, Sidi Nazim Baksh
arrow out fn5: human reason cannot alone lead man to Truth.

There is no god except Allah, Muhammad is His Prophet!

”The dispensation brought by the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ supersedes all previous dispensations. No one among the polytheists and the Judeo-Christian possessors of Scripture is excused unless they have never heard of it, {and most of them are depraved}.” Sh. Gibril F Haddad
Sura 3-110.

It is only Islam which has all possibilies left to guide sincere men and women unto a truly spiritual path [fn21], for Islam absorbes the messages and spiritual powers (baraka) of earlier religions. It also responds to all levels of human nature, not just to mind or human thought process; but also to the intellectual, the imaginative, the emotional and the social powers of man.
In essence, Islam's spiritual strength derives from it being based on authentic traditions with known chains of transmission, preserved and taught up to the present day, in other words Islam is based on the truth.
Previous religions have - on the contrary - lost their 'salt' [fn20] or 'saving strength', they have no validity or actuality left, a fact of which Prophet ʿIsa (Jesus) (peace be upon him) already warned 2000 years ago.
All this explains why it is Islam that reigns - today - until the last day;[lk1] and therefore "the most perfect manifestation of the primordial tradition, which in the Quran in sura 30, verse 30 is called the eternal religion (ad-dinu l-qayyim), is in this era the religion of Islam." [fn23]
{ inna - ddīna ʿinda-LLahi-l islām }

{ Truly! The religion with God is Islam }, so that His religion or way of life (dīn) will surpass and replace all the others, which becomes ever more evident as we approach the last times - the latter days.
arrow out lk1: The reason why Islam was revealed
arrow out lk5: Earlier revelations came to certain peoples only

Concerning the validity or non-validity of other religions', there is the definition by Shaykh Muhyiddīn Ibn ʿArabi:

"The religious laws (shara'i' ) are all lights, and the law of Muhammad ﷺ Allah bless him and give him peace -
among these lights is as the sun's light among the lights of the stars:
When the sun comes out, the lights of the stars are no longer seen and their lights are absorbed into the light of the sun ..."
arrow out lk2: Ibn ʿArabi on the religious laws

When Islam is attacked from many sides
– the fortress has to be fortified,
when its outer walls of defence have fallen (the Ottoman kalifat),
– its inner walls of defence have to be manned.

For Islam will exist until the end of times,
which is also the time of the Dajjāl (the Anti-Christ), of Al-Mahdi and Jesus (peace be with them both).

But Allah knows most and best!


fn1. What is problematic with Sedgwick's homepage (and later his book) is his way of lumping together all those authors who may have got some intellectual input from R Guénon, without for that reason having reached the deeper implications of his work.
He states that his website ( traditionalists.org ) "does not advance any particular interpretation of Traditionalism, ( ... covering ... ) all those who describe themselves as Traditionalists, and all those who have visibly been influenced by Traditionalism."
So for example M. Eliade, professor in religious studies and non-muslim, who apparently lacked a deeper understanding of R Guénon's work, but nevertheless used copiously his notions of Tradition.
Then not to forget that Sedgwick's project is at another level, not so much concerned with (metaphysical) concepts of truth and falsehood, but modern academical (i.e. inside the framework of the academical, positivistic method).
His research is useful to a point, not the least from a history studies point of view, but one should be aware of obvious blank spaces and misrepresentations: Inside information which he obtained may not always have been as impartial and truthful as it should be for a detached study in "traditionalism" of this kind.

See also regarding M. Sedgwick's book:
Book Review - Against The Modern World, by Róbert Horvāth
and: The Critique of Modernism, by Harry Oldmeadow
[ up back to text]
fn2. The essential content of the religion which was taught by earlier prophets is the same as the one proclaimed by Prophet Muhammad ﷺ . The message concerned the same core: worship of one true God and submission to Him.
This fact - that all prophets preached the same divine message of Islam to their peoples - has been misunderstood and ignored by two groups of people:
One group are those who don't know Arabic and the correct meaning of the word Islam. They just use this word as a label for the religion which was preached by Muhammad ﷺ. The other group are those muslims who don't use the word Islam in its wider meaning. Islam is a mindset and a plan for action, not just the name of the teaching brought by Prophet Muhammad ﷺ. This is what is aimed at in the following verse (3: 102):
{O ye who believe ! fear ALLAH as HE should be feared (taqwa); and let not death overtake you except when you are in a state of submission.}

God made it abandontly clear that the final revelation to mankind, the Quran, which was given to the last of the messengers, Muhammad ﷺ, constitutes not a new religion or a new message but is the pinnacle of the earlier messages and a correction of the mistakes which had crept into them over the centuries.
Call To The One God, Asra Rasheed; p. 47/48
[ up back to text]
fn3. As with the Free-Masons or Blavatsky. His books in which he disclosed them are:
- The Spiritist Fallacy (September 2003)
- Theosophy (September 2003)
- expired link (before 2017) - seriousseekers.com/Books
[ up back to text]
fn4. It is not difficult to recall instances of supposedly 'tradition' within Islam, examples which don't have much to do with the timeless message of Islam, freed from cultural and social (and political!) influences.

What quite a few people believe is Islam is instead often 'traditionalism', ie. customs and usages, or civilisation; (a quote by sister E. T.: "too much culture is brought into religion these days.")

Islam is fundamentally and originally Tradition - its timeless, divine message, this is why the Islamic Tradition defines the Islamic religion, not the other way round.
[ up back to text]
fn5. From time to time Allah sent His chosen servants, meaning His prophets and messengers to mankind, because human reason cannot alone lead man to the knowledge of Truth. This knowledge is sacred, metaphysical knowledge which transcends our sense perception or our rational thought. Therefore it is the duty of everyone to have faith in the fact that God - Allah has really sent them.

Note 65 to sura 22:52; Mohammad K Bernström, 'Koranens budskap':
"Messengers (rasūl, pl. rusul) are mediators of revelations which include new doctrinal systems or new religious forms, whereas the term prophet (nabīy, pl. anbiyā) refers to the one entrusted with the function of reminding people of the ethical principles which are at the base of an already existing religious system or which are common to all revealed religions."
[ up back to text]
fn6. Furthermore there are those who would most of all like to create a new religion as an amalgam of the others. They are using among other aspects 'perennialism' to boil an anti-traditional draught. Others start "non-religions", which however are strictly hierarchical organized with 'god-like' leaders, in their malign quest to attract followers for their invented movements, for which they don't have any authority.
[ up back to text]
fn7. Christianity of for example the 11th century is lightyears from today's form of Christianity. They don't even follow their own God-given law. So their pretention of 'loving God' is just not true. On top of this today "many Christians uncritically mix non-Christian values with (allegedly) Biblical values."
See: The Young Marriage of `Aishah, Mother of the Believers
by Abū Imān `Abd ar-Rahmān Robert Squires
[ up back to text]
fn8. "Instinctive knowledge of the Supreme Being is embedded in each human soul as an inborn part of human nature. Moreover, all peoples on earth have received divine messengers at some time in the course of human history or pre-history. Consequently, God and his names are part of a universal human legacy. They are hardly unique to anyone, nor are the Abrahamic religions the sole residuaries of divine names expressing the Creator's perfection and glory." p.4
[ up back to text]
fn9. "Numerous micro-religions (i.e. primitive religions) commemorate a primeval time of the 'old religion,' when harmony existed between the Supreme Being and their forebears, an age of pristine happiness which was brought to an end through wrongdoing, estrangement, and alienation." p.5
(Some page at [nawawi.org])
[ up back to text]

fn10. Descartes was the real founder of "rationalism". It meant the limitation and decline of intelligence by denying intellectual intuitionen and by setting reason above everything else.
Almqvist, Kurt; I tjänst hos det Enda, Ur René Guénons verk; 1977

René Guénon expressed it in the following way:

"Modern philosophy originates with Descartes; but, the influence exerted by him ... could never have extended so far had his conceptions not been in agreement with pre-existing tendencies already largely taken for granted by the majority of his contemporaries; the modern outlook saw its own reflection in Cartesianism ...

Moreover ... a movement as conspicuous as Cartesianism ... is not spontaneous, but the product of widely diffused and inconspicuous labours; if a man like Descartes happens to be particularly representative of the modern deviation, if he can be said to incarnate it to some extent and from a certain point of view, nevertheless he is neither the only person nor the first person responsible for it and it would be necessary to look much further back to discover its origins. Similarly, the Renaissance and the Reformation, which are usually regarded as the first great manifestations of the modern spirit, completed rather than provoked the rupture with tradition ..." p. 55

[Descartes saw the rational] facuty as the highest part of the intelligence, or even regarding it as coinciding with the whole of intelligence; it is this which constitutes "rationalism", of which [he] was the real originator. This limiting of the intelligence moreover was only a first stage; little time was to elapse before reason itself became degraded to the fulfilling of mainly practical functions ... p. 52
Crisis Of The Modern World; René Guénon / ʿAbd al-Wāhid Yahya
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fn11. From the Holy Quran:

{ Mankind were one community, then they differed among themselves, so ALLAH raised Prophets as bearers of good tidings and as warners, ...}
Sura The Cow (Al-Baqara) (2) verse 213

{ And certainly We sent apostles before you: there are some of them that We have mentioned to you and there are others whom We have not mentioned to you, ...}
Sura The Believer (Al-Mumin) (40) verse 78

{ And (We sent) apostles We have mentioned to you before and apostles we have not mentioned to you; ...}
Sura Women (an-Nisā) (4) verse 164

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fn12. These are core principles especially of the monotheistic world-religions. Then what is believed to be true in Islam differs of course from other religions, for Islam retains the exact and unblended information about God's - Allahs Unicity, may His Majesty be exalted, about the cosmos, about the nature of man, about the best way to travel from this life to the next, about the rescue (liberation) of the souls from the Fire and their entry into the Garden. The principles of Tradition have been guarded in their purest form in Islam.
arrow out lk19: God's Oneness as stated for example in the ʿAqīdah Al-Tahawi
arrow out lk26: On The Transmission And The Guarding Of The Islamic Tradition
[ up back to text]

fn13. What Muslims Also Have To Do

What muslims also have to do is to get rid of this attitude of victimization...
“Look, you [muslims] are responsibe - if you have the feeling that people around you don't know you or are scared of your presence, [then] it's up to you to reach out. It's exactly what you have to do. It means to say who you are, reach out, talk to people and try to walk with them and at the same time - within the community - we need more education. What we call an Islamic education is not only to spread Quran and ahadith – the prophetic tradition. If you are true and sincere in the fact that this is your country, [then] education means to know the constitution, to know the law, the history, to respect the collective psychology, to respect the surrounding culture - ... this is what I'm trying to do at a grassroots level and in my books.”
A quote from Tariq Ramadhan
(in a BBC-WS interview, 2005-04-03)
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fn14. This unlettered man – the Prophet of Islam ﷺ – came out of the cave with a new, wholly authentic message to heal all the wounds of humanity and challenged all the literary geniuses to produce a like of his message. This alone is enough to show that he is a Messenger sent by God to guide humanity to truth.
(From - expired link (before 2023-02-25) mlife.org)
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fn16. Comment by a reader:
"While there is of course a difference between perennialism and seeing 'similarities with the eternal principles of other religions, which have to be there because the divine message is universal', as your article says, there still seems to be some disturbing points in Guenon's teachings that seem not to adequate to a merely perspective of seeing similarities."
Then the dear reader presents some excerpts from - what he calls - R. Guenon's teachings, for example:
"He said: 'the fact of the matter is that I am attached to the Islamic initiatic organizations for thirty years, which, of course, is completely different' ... [than 'embracing the muslim religion']."

This is an example of focusing on personal details which are not very helpful… Whatever RG meant here with being 'attached to' in contrast to having 'embraced' Islam, he was a believing and a practicing Muslim!
It is better to embrace the dīn of Islam wholly and whole-heartedly, drinking from its live-giving nectar, than speculating in the personal choices of others on the way. [1e]
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{ Say you, 'We believe in ALLAH and what has been revealed to us, and what was revealed to Abraham and Ishmael, and Isaac and Jacob and his children and what was given to Moses and Jesus, and what was given to all other Prophets from their Lord. We make no distinction between any of them; and to HIM we submit ourselves.' } Quran, Sura 2, verse 136.
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fn18. See for example the fatwa or response by a qualified Muslim Scholar against the killing of civilians by the jurist of the Shafiʿi School Shaykh Muhammad Afifi al-Akiti or [lk27].
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fn19 At Signposts [lk28] key metaphysical terms are presented as explained by René Guénon based on his expositions in various places,
as one of his main concerns was on the one hand to produce an unsentimental analysis of Western ideological and religious development since the Renaissance, focusing on the degradation of various key terms in Western theory and philosophy; while on the other hand - with the better understanding so produced - to guiding toward true spirituality and God-fearingness.
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fn20 Jesus (peace be upon him) said: "You are the salt of the earth. But if salt loses its taste, with what can it be seasoned? It is no longer good for anything but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot." (Matthew 5:13)
Meaning he exhorts the believers to faithfulness, to fidelity, or to their role in purifying themselves to be useful to other people.
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1.) What does a godfearing believer (al-muttaqū ) believe in? (NB: among other elements of faith [lk18])
Allah says in the Quran in the beginning of sura al-Baqara:
{ wa-lladhīna yuminūna bimā unzila ilayka wa mā unzila min qablika ... }

{ And who have faith in what has been revealed to you and
in what has been revealed before you ... }
The meaning of this verse according to Ibn Kathir och At-Tabari is:
"They believe in what Allah sent you with (O Muhammad) and in what the previous Messengers were sent with, they do not distinguish between (believing) them, nor do they reject what they brought from their Lord.”
This also means according to Muhammed K Bernström: "This refers to one of the main themes of the Quran, namely that the divine revelation is a phenomena of historical continuity.” ( Koranens budskap, p. 4, not. 5 )
[7.] & lk18: Items of belief & the fundamentals of faith

2.) How should therefore the godfearing believer (al-muttaqu ) act? Which is the best of deeds?
{ Who created death and life that He may try you - which of you is best in deeds;
and He is the Mighty, the Forgiving } Sura The Kingdom (Al-Mulk) 67, verse 2
The answer is: He acts righteous (s.ālih ).
But this will be just hypocracy IF it is not done solely for Gods face, ie. for Allah's good pleasure. Therefore he will only choose such acts which are done for Gods face, ie. for Allah's good pleasure. But then it will still be inadequate, and Allah will not accept those acts, IF they are not done according to the prophetic Sunna!
(Hadith about the man who prayed in the mosque but who had to repeat his prayers twice because the Prophet ﷺ rejected them.)
"Sound Islamic doctrine ... affirms the oneness of heavenly religions although the dispensations and scriptures are more than one.
However, the perverting of the Qur'anic meanings through unheard-of interpretations is no object to those who push the agenda of what Sayyid Muhammad al-Yaʿqubi called a campaign of neutralization through co-option posing as interfaith activity."
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fn23. Regarding the usage of Hindu concepts it should be seen in the context of the first half of the 20th century, when there were practically no Muslims in Europe, and the dominant idea of ”God” was a personalised concept, which it was necessary to get rid of.
[Regarding the usage of Hindu concepts]
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fn24. This is reminiscent of the Second Law of Thermodynamics which also applies to communications and information theory. In these fields, information tends to be lost, and order tends to decrease.
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fn25. { This day have I perfected for you your religion and completed My favor on you and chosen for you Islam as a religion} Sura 5, vs.3
{ Whoever seeks a religion other than Islam will never have it accepted from him, and shall be of those who have truly failed in the next life. } Sura 3, vs.85 [ up back to text]

fn26. Religions are vessels for the Divine to manifest.
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fn27. Sometimes it is necessary to search for new answers within the scope of the Shariʿah concerning those issues touching on this life in the (post-)modern era, which is of course very different from that of traditional societies.
Then, in traditional societies it was almost unimaginable for someone to call himself an atheist and to comport himself as some of our contemporaries do, even there are those Quranic verses and hadith predicting exactly this state of affairs (fasad) in the Last Times.
To search for new answers within the scope of the Shariʿah has to be done - as expressed for example by Shaykh A. H. Murad - by “extension and development of the fiqh in response to modern conditions (ijtihad).” [lk19]
This is the normal way to do it, because Islam is not rigid for the Muslims, but facilitating things - and Islam does not impose hardship, but good tidings:
As the Messenger of Allah, Prophet Muhammad ﷺ
said in a sound hadith:
“yassirū wa lā tuʿassirū
wa bashshirū wa la tunaffirū”

Make things easy for people,
Don't make things difficult for them and give them good tidings, and don't chase them away (from Islam).

Al-Bukhari B1-69
arrow out lk19: Al-Tahawī's ʿAqīdah

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Shaykh Abdu-l Wahīd Yahya (René Guénon) restored the correct ethymological and above all traditional [5a] meaning of different terms [fn19], especially those of 'Tradition' itself, because they constitute the kernel of Islam and of every authentic religion.
The word 'tradition' is derived from Latin 'tradere', i.e. to hand over, deliver, entrust something from God - Allah via His prophets. What is handed over is the Quranic revelation, the āyah (Quranic verses) and - through those - the baraka Divine blessings, which are heavenly powers, all of these leading to sacred knowledge. They constitute one of the ongoing wonders of Islam.
arrow out fn4: Tradition is not customs and usages, or civilisation
arrow out fn9: a primeval time when harmony existed
arrow out lk6: Postmodernist Mentality

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Shaykh Ahmed Valsan (r - 2016), son of Michel Valsan (1911-1974), grew up in Paris where he was taught Sharia - the law and tariqa - the way by his father. He later continued his studies at Al-Azhar University in Egypt.

Imam Ahmed Valsan (r) worked as a translator and as friday imam at a mosque in Stockholm. He was - as his father - a shaykh within the Shadhili order.

He was an expert on the teachings of Muhyiddiin Ibn Arabi and lived according to what he preached.

May Allah forgive him and have mercy with him.

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fn30. Quoted from: The Quranic View of Sacred History and Other Religions, by Joseph Lumbard; in The Study Quran

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link-in Related pages:

•  lk1 The reason why Islam was revealed
•  lk2 Ibn ʿArabi on the religious laws
•  lk3 Common core principles
•  lk4 From The Life Of Prophet Mohammed
•  lk5 Earlier Revelations To Certain Peoples Only
•  lk6 Modernism And Postmodern Thought
•  lk8 Notes On The New Age Movement
•  lk9 The wider sense of the word 'Islam'
•  lk10 Is Being Muslim Necessary?
•  lk11 Eleven (False) New Age Principles
•  lk12 Charles Upton; The System Of Antichrist
•  lk13 Some of René Guénon's works
•  lk14 Tradition Islamique - Islamic Tradition
•  lk15 Difference Between Spirit And Soul Or Psyche
•  lk17 Descartes limited intelligence to reason
•  lk18 Items of belief & the fundamentals of faith
•  lk19 Al-Tahawī's ʿAqīdah
•  lk20 Understanding The Four Madhhabs, footn. 74
•  lk21 xL, Islam & Christianity: Two Religions, One God; Sh. A Kuftaro
•  lk22 Symbole der heiligen Wissenschaft
•  lk23 Protestant Islam by Mohammed Al-Abbasi
•  lk23b The Amman Message
•  lk24 In the Spirit of Tradition, Sidi Nazim Baksh
•  lk25 Book review: Sufism: The Essentials, Mark J Sedgwick
•  lk26 On T Transmission And The Guarding Of T Islamic Tradition
•  lk27 Defending the Transgressed by Censuring the Reckless
against the Killing of Civilians, Sh M Afifi al-Akiti

•  lk28 Directions from Signposts at *LivingIslam*
•  lk29 On The Significance Of The Teachings Of RG, OKN


* Living Islam – Islamic Tradition *