The Realm of Imagination According to Jalal al-Din Rumi and Ibn Arabi

This article will compare the mystical characteristics of Rumi and Ibn Arabi and their description of the realm of imagination.Rumi's mystical journey was a difficult and a dangerous one. He, after years of meditation and spiritual purification ascended to a high mystical stage at the age of forty. Jalal al-Din had a special devotion towards his teachers and believing men. He believed that one's relation with the Truth is not possible without discovering and annihilating oneself in the perfect man . Rumi in his book of poetry illustrated two modes of devotion, one is a spiritual love and the other is an enlightened mind. In his opinion, man's universe and kingdom is made of his actions, words and attributes which are all part of the realm of imagination. In his Mathnawi, Rumi expounded this concept with clarity and wisdom.Ibn Arabi was exposed to the "secrets of the inner heart " at an early age. He considered the realm of imagination as the vastest world in which even the most impossible and absurd acts become possible. In a way a corporeal being can exist in two places simultaneously. In this realm it is even possible to imagine the form of the Necessary Being . Imagination can interfer with sensible and intelligible faculties, this can be considered mystical knowledge and a discovery by the imagination. This kind of change and alteration is possible only in the realm of imagination . Man's desires take form in the realm of imagination and not in the realm of feeling. In the hereafter, since the intrinsic aspect of man takes the place of his physical appearance, there will not be a distinction between imagination and feeling.With all the vastness and capability that the realm of imagination presents, it has still some limitations. Moral issues, as well as issues of relations and additions cannot be formulated or addressed in this realm. In this realm one cannot make a mistake, for mistake is based on a command, and a command is not part of the realm of imagination
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